Category Archives: Crop Management

Missouri Plot – John Viertel

Since 2012, we have been working on a thirty-acre field in central Missouri that we have designated as the Soil Health Study. This field was taken out of grass pasture for a soybean, corn, and wheat rotation. The only tillage used has been with the Aerway/Salford double rolling basket. My brother, Bruce, is also using cover-crops, which he can utilize as pasture for his cattle (this has been fantastic for him). There has been a minimum of dry fertilizer applied to this field, using the recommendation from a Haney soil test. We have been using our SOIL SERVICE, INC. products – Crop Choice starter fertilizer for corn, Foliar Opp foliar feeds the soybean, MAX 72 SRN was used on the wheat crop. Our NUTRIENT RECYCLING PROGRAM has been spring applied on the entire field since 2015.

So, that is just a very short summary of the management of this field. What are we seeing and how are we measuring the result?

I thought in the beginning the Haney soil health calculation would be a good thing to track, or even the   Soil Respiration CO2-C number could be tracked. Yes, they both can, but what really jumped out at me was the ORGANIC MATTER PERCENTAGE!

In 2012, the first O.M. was 1.9 %. Just got the latest soil test results back this week, and the O.M. has reached 3.4%. That is an increase of 1.5% in six years! Now, I have been to a lot of meetings, listened to  soil scientists and soil health experts, and all I have heard from them is “it takes twenty years to raise soil organic matter 1%”. We must be doing something right in this field!

Cover-crops are really, really hot right now, and it looks like the best way to get full advantage of what they have to offer, is to use SOIL SERVICE, INC.’S Nutrient Recycling Program. Why? Because this product has been formulated to help break down crop residue (and crop roots), provide energy and food to the soil bacteria, and introduce more of the bacteria and mycorrhizae into the soil. It also helps unlock more soil nutrients which are tied up in the soil. It will also stabilize nitrogen.

The visual differences which we have seen are: better soil tilth, better water infiltration, much better stress tolerance, healthier crops, larger and deeper root systems, and of course – BETTER YEILDS!

If you want more information about the Soil Health Study, or the Nutrient Recycling Program, email us info@soilserviceinc.com


John Viertel

Post Emerge Program Success

It’s almost the end of July, and as I have been traveling around the state, I have seen a lot of soybean fields. Some (Image 1 shown below) have weeds that have come through the herbicide program and do not even show signs of being sprayed. Others (Image 2 -treated with the SOIL SERVICE, INC. program) are clean.

Image 1

Image 2

In the picture above of the clean field of Liberty Link soybeans, the operator used the program that I have been recommending for the past five (5) years with Liberty herbicide.

 Here is that program, applied between the V-3 and V-5 stage of the soybean grow:

  • Minimum of 20 gallons’ spray solution per acre
  • 24 ounces SOIL BOOST PLUS per acre
  • 32 ounces MAX 72 SRN per acre
  • 32 ounces LANDOIL per acre
  • 16 ounces SUGAR E-BOOST per acre
  • 2 gallons’ FOLIAR OPP for Beans per acre
  • 32 ounces Liberty Herbicide per acre

This post emerge program has been working very well for everyone that has been using it!  But, if you have fields that have a history of resistant weeds, don’t rely on just a post spray for control. Here are a few management tips that I have seen working very well.

  1. Spray weeds before they reach 4 inches in height – easier to kill!
  2. Use a pre-emergent herbicide.
  3. Rotate crops. That will allow you to rotate herbicides with different modes of action.
  4. Plant a cover crop. The competition and the heavy residue helps keep the weed pressure down.

On August 17, SOIL SERVICE, INC. is having a CUSTOMER APPRECIATION DAY at our home office and research farm near Niota, Illinois. We would like for you to attend if possible. We will have representatives from Ag Leader, Yetter, Salford Equipment, as well as our team from SOIL SERVICE to answer questions that you may have concerning this topic as well as others.

Now Is The Time For Foliar Feeding

I returned to John Hansman’s last week to deliver some more Foliar Opp for soybeans. The field below had Foliar Opp applied prior (at about the V-4 stage).  Looking back at a previous blog, this was a field where there was concern over the population, after all the extreme rain we received in April. Yes, there were some areas in the field that were patched in, and this is what the field looks like today.

Local cash price for new crop soybeans is $9.30 this morning. At this price, it only takes a two bushel per acre increase to pay for the Foliar Opp. History has shown that we can get anywhere from a 5 to 10 bushel per acre yield bump when Foliar Opp is applied.

If you are interested in foliar feeding your soybeans, NOW is the time to contact us to get yours ordered and delivered. V-4 up to V-6 is the first window for application, with the second window coming at the R-1 stage. Foliar Opp can be applied with your herbicide and or your fungicide program.

Valmar Seeder & AerWay Cover Crop Follow Up



SOIL SERVICE, INC is a  Valmar Dealer, and if you have an interest in seeding your covercrop this way, let us know and we will be glad to answer any questions you may have.  


Last fall we incorporated our cereal rye covercrop with the Aerway/Remlinger Harrow after broadcasting with fertlizer. Got a good stand! Now, there is another option, the Valmar Air Seeder mounted on the Aerway.  A great way to do two operations in one!

Good stand of cereal rye!

June 20, 2017

Not only did we incorporate the cover crop last fall with great results, we also broadcast fertlizer and wheat after soybeans, and used the AERWAY/REMLINGER HARROW to work it in. At that time, the decesion had not been made whether it was going to be harvested for silage bales or grain. As the season progressed, the wheat looked better and better! Good decision, this field averaged 77 bushels per acre across the scales at the elevator.

Ok, I’ve heard of some 100 bushel yeilds on some high input fields. This field was not high input! Small amout of P & K spread with the wheat, 50 units of N top dressed in March, and copper added to the herbicide application.

Nice view from the combine cab!

We have said many times that the AERWAY/REMLINGER HARROW is the most versatile VERTICAL TILLAGE TOOL on the market today. Whether for pastures, fall tillage, spring tillage, or for incorporating small grains, cover crops, and grass seed, the AERWAY/REMLINGER HARROW will get the job done!



Evaluating Stands in Bean Fields After Rain

I have been getting out in the field with my hula hoop this week checking the stands in some soybean fields where there is a lot of cover crop residue. Because of all the recent rains and the residue, there seems to be some real variation in the populations, especially in areas where water ponded for any length of time.

I know that many of you are getting beans planted for the first time but if you had beans planted ahead of all the rain that we’ve had or even some of the rain that we just had in the last week, it would be a good time to evaluate those stands.

Contact me at jviertel@soilserviceinc.com